The aim of bePOM is to strengthen the Belgian photonics network by bringing together research groups from all Belgian universities working on fundamental and applied topics in photonics. It gives early-career and established researchers the opportunity to (re)discover and learn about current research topics in neighbouring Belgian cities, without necessarily having to travel from their home university.
This year, all Belgian universities were represented. Participation has also been growing since the first edition in 2020, and the 150 mark was reached this year.
The first day was held entirely online and included a poster session organised using the GatherTown interface. There were also
- A "Belgians Abroad" session highlighting the career path of a Belgian scientist now based abroad (Prof. Tom Vettenburg, University of Dundee). This original format allows PhD students to learn how to build a scientific career and shows that the road to success is not a long straight line;
- A workshop on how to create a short pitch on your research topic, led by Gwenaelle Lefeuvre. An enriching workshop with lots of tips and tricks to make your communication fluid, understandable and interesting.
The second day was organised in a hybrid format, with the traditional online participation and a face-to-face session attended by 75 people at the VUB's U-Residence. In addition to the usual presentations,
- A "paper discussion" with the author of a scientific article (Prof. Vincent Ginis, VUB-Harvard) prompted many questions.
- An industrial research and development (R&D) session with the companies Barco, Luceda Photonics, Innovative Coatings Solutions (ICS) and Lambda-X.
- A job fair with companies such as Azalea Vision, Luceda Photonics, Multitel, Spectricity, EuroCC and Lambda-X. University groups also advertised vacancies.
The day ended with the awards ceremony, followed by an evening of networking.
Focus on the UNamur participation
he UNamur delegation was the 2nd largest university delegation, after that of the VUB.
- Yves Caudano, FNRS-qualified researcher in the Department of Physics (NISM and naXys Institutes), gave a tutorial entitled "Quantum weak measurements in optics".
- Nicolas Roy, a researcher in the Department of Physics (NISM and naXys Institutes), presented his recent results in an invited talk entitled "Physics and computers: a love story that just started".
- Antoine Honet, a researcher in the Department of Physics (NISM Institute), organised the Namur hub, with the support of the NISM Institute and the Solid State Physics Research Unit (LPS).
- Louis Rassinfosse, researcher in the Department of Physics (NISM Institute), represented Innovative Coatings Solutions (ICS), a UNamur spin-off, at the industrial session.
Thanks to the support of their sponsors, the organising committee was able to award several prizes: best poster (public vote), awarded to Camilla Castillo Pinto (VUB) by Yann Amouroux, representing Optica. Médéric Loyer (UMons), Mahammad Shahab (VUB) and Nicolas Roisin (UCL) received prizes from MDPI Photonics for the best presentations. Alice Decorte (UMons) received the best poster prize from MDPI Biosensors.
Over the course of these 4 editions, the organising committee, initially made up of 3 members (Dr Michaël Lobet and Dr Sébastien Mouchet from UNamur and Dr Gilles Rosolen from UMons), has been joined by representatives from all the Belgian universities. Yann Amouroux, representing Optica, said he was "very impressed by the work done and the scientific quality of the meeting". He also pointed out that this was a first in terms of the participation of all the Belgian universities involved in optics and photonics.
bePOM 2023 in figures
bePOM 2023 in a few pictures
Thanks to all the sponors
The bePOM 2023 team would like to thank all the sponsors: Optica, the FRS/FNRS, the FSR support for UNamur's doctoral schools, the VUB doctoral school, the Main doctoral school, the Metamorphose doctoral school, MDPI Photonics, MDPI Biosensors and UNamur's NISM Institute.
The organising committee would also like to thank all the participants and look forward to seeing you in September 2024!